In 2016, Ganesh Chaturthi is on September 05. Celebrate Ganesh Chaturthi with great fun and enthusiasm. On this day, Lord Ganesha is worshipped, who is also known as ‘Vighnaharta’. Now, enjoy good fortune and wisdom by worshiping him on his birthday or Vinayaka Chavithi in 2016. Scroll more to read
Ganesh Chaturthi is on September 5 in 2016. Also known as Vinayaka Chavithi, it is one of the biggest festivals of Maharashtra and South India. It is celebrated as the birthday of Lord Ganesha or Vinayaka. Lord Ganesha’s devotees also call him Ganpati and Vighnaharta with love and respect. Because of different names of Lord Ganesha, the day of Ganesh Chaturthi is also called by different names like Vinayagar Chaturthi, Vinayaka Chaturthi, Pillayar Chaturthi, Vinayak Chaturthi, Ganesh Utsav and Ganesh Chauth.
According to the Hindu calendar, Vinayagar Chaturthi falls on the fourth day of the bright half of Bhadrapada. The grand celebrations of the festival of Ganesh Utsav lasts for up to 11 days. This grand festival of Vinayaka Chavithi, in the honor of Ganpati, ends on Anant Chaturdashi or on Ganesh Visarjan day.
Lord Ganesha is the son of Maa Parvati and Lord Shiva. He is the lord of prosperity, wisdom, and good fortune. He is also called “Vighnaharta” (remover of all troubles) and thus, people worship him before starting any auspicious work or business. Through this article on Ganesha Chaturthi 2016, let’s read more about Ganpati and the rituals and customs of Vinayaka Chavithi.
Before celebrating Vinayagar Chaturthi or Ganesh Chaturthi in 2016, let’s first discuss about the legends associated with this festival of Vinayaka Chavithi.
Ganpati was created by Mata Parvati, by creating an idol of a child from sandalwood paste and respiring life into it. During that time, Lord Shiva was not at home. As Maa Parvati was going to take bath, she gave instructions to Ganpati not to let anybody come in. When Lord Shiva came back, Ganesha didn't let him in, as he was following the order of her mother, Maa Parvati. Also, Ganpati was not aware of the fact that Shiva was his father.
After some time, all the gods came there and attacked Ganesha, but he defeated them all. After this, Lord Shiva thrashed down Ganesha’s head in anger.
Maa Parvati became very angry and she demanded her child (Ganpati) to be brought back to life. By seeing Parvati in anger, Lord Shiva promised her that he will restore their child’s life. All Gods started searching for a head. Their search ended with an elephant’s head. Lord Shiva fixed that elephant’s head on Ganesha’s body and brought him back to life. Lord Ganesha or Vinayaka is the “Vighnaharta” for demons and “Vighnaharta” for gods and his devotees.
Its always good to talk about the history of a festival before celebrating it. Therefore, before celebrating Ganesh Chaturthi in 2016, let us understand the real significance of this day.
Initially, Vinayaka Chaturthi or Ganesha Chaturthi was celebrated in Maharashtra and some parts of South India, on a smaller scale. Ganesh Chaturthi (Vinayaka Chavithi) was popularized by Bal Gangadhar Tilak, during the late 19th century. He said that the festival is not only for Hindus, and therefore, should be celebrated by the people of all religions. He did that to built the feelings of togetherness and unity, and also to encourage the feeling of patriotism among Indians. British government did not allow the social gatherings and meetings of Indians, at that time. Still, he (Bal Gangadhar Tilak) encouraged people to come together and show Britishers the power of togetherness. He organized music & dance shows, and programs, which helped in the revival of patriotic feelings. From then, the festival of Vinayaka Chaturthi is celebrated all around the country with full zeal and enthusiasm. The feelings of togetherness and unity will once again revive with the celebration of Vinayaka Chavithi in 2016.
Though, Ganesh Chaturthi is celebrated across the nation on a large scale, but the real festivities are seen in Maharashtra. Let’s throw some light on the customs and traditions of Maharashtra, along with other regions of the country.
In Maharashtra, a number of large and small statues are prepared by artists, days before the festival of Vinayagar Chaturthi.
Large sculptures are established in different Pandals, on the eve of Vinayaka Chavithi. These Pandals are organized throughout the city in different localities during the time of Vinayaka Chavithi.
Lord Ganesha’s sculptures are taken by his devotees to their homes, for serving and worshiping the deity. People honor and serve Lord Ganesha for a period of 1, 3, 5, 7 or 11 days, depending on the beliefs of different communities. Honor of Lord Ganesha takes place either in Pandals or at homes. Ladoos (Indian sweet delicacy made of sweet condiments), coconut, jaggery, Durva (grass), and red flowers are offered to the lord, as these things are considered to be his favorites. Temples are beautifully decorated and priests (Pandits) usually clad in traditional wears, to offer prayers to Ganapati.
To seek the blessings and glory of Ganpati, devotees observe Ganesh Chaturthi Vrat on the day of Vinayaka Chavithi. To make the best of this festival, you can also conduct the rituals of this day and observe Vinayagar Chaturthi Vrat in 2016.
Last day of Vinayagar Chaturthi celebrations is known as Ganesha Visarjan. On this day, a procession is carried out throughout the city. The statues and idols of Lord Ganesha which are worshiped throughout Ganesh Utsav, are taken to some holy water body such as river, lake or sea, for immersion. This ritual is popularly known as Ganesh Visarjan.
Many programs like dance shows, orchestra and theatre performances are also organized to double up the celebrations of Ganesh Chaturthi or Vinayaka Chavithi. Different artists get a chance to showcase their talent on this day. People from different religions participate in the celebrations of Vinayaka Chaturthi with full energy and enthusiasm. Again, we will see these celebrations of Vinayagar Chaturthi in 2016. Worship Lord Ganesha and celebrate Vinayaka Chaturthi in 2016 with full devotion to seek the blessings of Vinayaka.
People worship the statue of Lord Ganpati, made from clay and turmeric in their homes on the day of Ganesh Chaturthi or Vinayaka Chavithi.
Vinayaka Chaturthi is celebrated outside India, as well. The Hindu organizations of countries like London, U.S, Canada, Philippines, U.K, Mauritius, Malaysia, and Singapore, organize special programs to worship Lord Ganpati on the eve of Vinayaka Chavithi. People of Indian origin from different religions, participate with full interest and excitement in Ganesh Chaturthi celebrations. If you are residing in any of these foreign countries, then you can also witness and enjoy Vinayagar Chaturthi celebrations in 2016.
Now, let’s talk about some of the most famous dishes of Vinayagar Chaturthi, for celebrating Vinayaka Chavithi in 2016 in a more delightful manner.
People who bring home Lord Ganesha for celebrating Vinayaka Chavithi (Vinayaka Chaturthi), offer him his favorite dishes like Modak, Kheer (sweet rice porridge) and other sweet dishes.
Ganesh Chaturthi celebrations in 2016 are incomplete without these delicious sweet dishes.
Some of the most famous dishes which you can prepare for celebrating Ganesh Chaturthi in 2016 are:
Try preparing these dishes at home, or bring them from the market to add on extra flavor to Vinayaka Chavithi 2016 celebrations.
Every year during the celebrations of Ganesh Chaturthi or Vinayagar Chaturthi, a large number of statues of Lord Ganesha are immersed in the water bodies such as rivers, lakes or sea.
The immersion (Ganesh Visarjan) of Lord Ganesha statues is associated with the spiritual values of devotees, but it is not a very good practice for our environment. Statues of Ganpati are made from plaster of paris which are insoluble in water. Also, the paints which are used to beautify the statutes contain heavy metals like mercury, lead, and cadmium. These are very harmful for our environment and cause water pollution.
At some places like Goa, Ganesha statues made from plaster of paris, are banned by the government and people are encouraged to buy clay idols of Vinayaka Chavithi or Ganesh Chaturthi.
Various advertisements are also published or shown by the government every year, to recommend the use of clay idols of Vinayaka Chavithi. People are also advised to immerse the idols of Ganpati in water tanks or water tubs, rather than natural water bodies.
Let’s come together and take pledge that we will use only clay idols for celebrating Vinayaka Chavithi in 2016.
Celebrate Ganesh Chaturthi in 2016 with full devotion and holiness to get the blessings of Lord Ganesha in 2016. Lord Ganesha fulfills all wishes and removes all the sins of his devotees on the day of Vinayaka Chavithi.
Try to use eco friendly clay idols of Ganpati for celebrating Ganesh Chaturthi in 2016 and make the festival nature friendly and less harmful.
Happy Ganesh Chaturthi 2016 to all...